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It’s More Than a Tootsie Roll

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The 51st Annual Intellectual Disabilities or “Tootsie Roll” Fund Drive will be held September 18-19-20, 2020. It is one of the most recognizable activities that the Knights of Columbus do. The funds generated from this drive are used to support local programs which aid and contribute to organizations devoted to the care of individuals and particularly those inflicted with one or more forms of Intellectual disability.

Typically, at this time of year, you would see Knights in yellow vests that read “Helping People with Intellectual Disabilities” on the street corners and in front of store fronts around town.  For every donation, each donor is offered a piece of candy in appreciation by the Knight present, most commonly a Tootsie Roll, but the Knights have no official ties to Tootsie Roll Industries. This year, due to the pandemic, those visible signs may be missing, but the need is still there – even greater than in the past.

When Father Michael J. McGivney founded the Knights in 1882, times were remarkably like today, with illness and unemployment.  Our fraternal order was created to care for and protect the members and their families.  Our core principles, which include charity, have not changed since our founding.  Just as those initial men did during a pandemic of their own, the Knights of today are looking to continue our efforts during this time of crisis.   We need your help to be successful.

We must be creative to accomplish our goals, taking safety of our volunteers and the public to heart in our planning.  Our council is working closely with the Supreme, State, and other local Councils of the KofC, as well as state, local, and church officials, to plan our 2020 campaign.   Parts of our plans may need to change right up until the planned date of the event in September.

Please bookmark this page – it will be updated with our detailed plans.   Donations are encouraged via the various options we will list here.   The more donations we can receive through these virtual means, the less risk to our volunteers or the public.   We thank you for your past contributions to this annual campaign and hope that you will be able to assist us this year as well.

Councils’ participation in this campaign as well as many other fund-raising endeavors contributed $185 million and volunteered over 75 million hours helping various causes last year.

So, the next time you see a Knight in a yellow vest asking for donations outside a grocery store, and you receive a Tootsie Roll, remember it is more than a “Tootsie Roll Drive.” It is a chance to provide people with intellectual and physical disabilities more resources to live a happy life.

 

The 51st Annual Intellectual Disabilities or “Tootsie Roll” Fund Drive will be held September 18-19-20, 2020. It is one of the most recognizable activities that the Knights of Columbus do. The funds generated from this drive are used to support local programs which aid and contribute to organizations devoted to the care of individuals and […]

Road to Beatification for Father McGivney

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Do You Believe in Miracles?

A miracle is defined as an extraordinary event

that has no current medical or scientific explanation.

Dan and Michelle Schachle of Dickson, Tennessee, believed in them so much that they even prayed to Father Michael McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus, to intercede with God to save their son, still in his mother’s womb, who was given no hope of surviving a life-threatening case of fetal hydrops, a dangerous accumulation of fluids throughout the body.

This story unfolds in late 2014, when Michelle learned that she was pregnant.  After an ultrasound, she learned that her son had Down syndrome and hydrops.    They turned to McGivney for help. The Knights of Columbus have been promoting his sainthood cause since 1997 and the Schachles were members of the Father McGivney Guild (www.fathermcgivney.org), an organization established to support the cause. They asked others to pray to the priest for his intercession, too. They went on a Knights-sponsored pilgrimage in March 2015 to the Vatican, Spain, and the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima in Portugal and they prayed for his intercession.

Four days after their return from the pilgrimage, Michelle went back to the doctor’s office for another ultrasound to check the baby’s fluid levels and the status of the hydrops. Doctors confirmed there was no sign of the life-threatening condition. Today Mikey is a healthy 5 year old.

When Dan Schachle told folks at the Knights’ Supreme Council in New Haven, Connecticut, about his son Mikey’s cure in utero and his birth, they asked if they could inform those working on Father Michael J. McGivney’s sainthood cause. Dan quickly agreed.

To verify an event is a miracle, “you have to prove two things,” Brian Caulfield, vice postulator of McGivney’s cause said. “The first thing is to prove this was a healing that’s not explained by medical science.” The second is to clearly identify who people were praying to for their intercession, in this case, whether the intercession of McGivney was clearly invoked.

“We never prayed to have Down syndrome healed. That wasn’t life threatening,” they answered. “We thought a child with Down syndrome would be a blessing for our family.”

On May 27, after a long formal process of review, the Vatican announced Pope Francis had signed the decree recognizing the miracle through the intercession of McGivney. Once he is beatified, he will be given the title “Blessed.”  Read more about this story (click here).


Prayer for the Canonization of Father Michael J. McGivney

God, our Father, protector of the poor and defender of the widow and orphan, you called your priest, Father Michael J. McGivney, to be an apostle of Christian family life and to lead the young to the generous service of their neighbor. Through the example of his life and virtue may we follow your Son, Jesus Christ, more closely, fulfilling his commandment of charity and building up his Body which is the Church. Let the inspiration of your servant prompt us to greater confidence in your love so that we may continue his work of caring for the needy and the outcast. We humbly ask that you glorify your venerable servant Father Michael J. McGivney on earth according to the design of your holy will. Through his intercession, grant the favor I now present (here make your request). Through Christ our Lord. Amen. (Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory be.)

Do You Believe in Miracles? A miracle is defined as an extraordinary event that has no current medical or scientific explanation. Dan and Michelle Schachle of Dickson, Tennessee, believed in them so much that they even prayed to Father Michael McGivney, founder of the Knights of Columbus, to intercede with God to save their son, […]

Patriotism and Faith

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INDEPENDENCE DAYS

Mary Stained Glass Window US FlagIn early July, the two nations in which the Knights of Columbus was first established both celebrate their independence: Canada on July 1 (“Canada Day”) and the United States on July 4 (“Independence Day”)Independence Day in the Philippines was celebrated just a few weeks ago, on June 12.

Independence Days are typically celebrated with public displays of patriotism, including parades, picnics, fireworks displays and speeches at civic events and members of the Patriotic Degree of the Knights of Columbus (the Fourth Degree) will often be found turning out in full regalia at these ceremonies.  This year will be different due to the pandemic.

Patriotism has been one of the four principles of the Knights of Columbus since the Fourth Degree was established in 1900, with a ceremony on George Washington’s birthday, February 22.

PATRIOTISM AND FAITH

In 2005, not long before he died, Pope John Paul II published what was to be his last book, Memory and Identity.  It was a fascinating discussion of good and evil, of church and state, of freedom and democracy, and of the Communist and Nazi totalitarianism which produced so much human tragedy during the 20th Century.  The Pope drew a careful distinction between nationalism and patriotism.

“Whereas nationalism involves recognizing and pursuing the good of one’s own nation alone, without regard for the rights of others,” he wrote, “patriotism . . . is a love for one’s native land that accords rights to all other nations equal to those claimed for one’s own.  Patriotism, in other words, leads to a properly ordered social love.”

John Paul notes that the word patriotism comes from the root word “patria,” meaning “home” or “native land.”  It is related to the Latin word “pater,” meaning “father,” and so we sometimes speak of “fatherland” or “motherland” as well.  “The concept of patria includes the values and the spiritual content that make up the culture of a great nation,” the Pope wrote.  “The very idea of ‘native land’ presupposes a deep bond between the spiritual and the material, between culture and territory.”

For members of the Knights of Columbus, for whom faith and patriotism go hand in hand, Pope John Paul’s is a concise description of the relationship between the two: the Fourth Commandment, which tells us to honor our father and mother, obliges us to honor our homeland as well:  “The spiritual patrimony which we acquire from our native land comes to us through our mother and father,” he says.

Patriotism is a love for everything to do with our native land: its history, its traditions, its language, its natural features.  It is a love which extends also to the works of our compatriots and the fruits of their genius.  Every danger that threatens the overall good of our native land becomes an occasion to demonstrate this love. . . The native land is the common good of all citizens and as such it imposes a serious duty.”

INDEPENDENCE DAYS In early July, the two nations in which the Knights of Columbus was first established both celebrate their independence: Canada on July 1 (“Canada Day”) and the United States on July 4 (“Independence Day”).  Independence Day in the Philippines was celebrated just a few weeks ago, on June 12. Independence Days are typically […]

Fathers for Good Knights Initiative

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Happy Father’s Day …

Here’s a message you don’t hear too often: “As a father, you matter a lot. You are needed at home and in the wider world to do things only a dad can do. You can make all the difference in the lives of your children no matter their age. Just show up for them, make the effort to be with them, and offer them a warm, engaged and masculine presence”.

You can READ MORE in The Science of Fatherhood by Soren Johnson, which was first published exclusively for members of the Knights of Columbus.   The Science of Fatherhood looks at the vital role fathers play in the modern family.

Prayer of a Father

click to enlarge

 

A FATHER IS … A Protector … Involved … A Loving Husband … AND SO MUCH MORE.

The Knights of Columbus has an initiative for men, Fathers for Good, that we invite you to visit. Whether you are a seasoned dad, a new dad, a dad to be, or a single guy wanting to know more about fatherhood, this Web site is for you.
There is a role only a father can fill and gifts only a father can give. In a culture that often does not favor fatherhood or masculine virtue, we wish to highlight the unique contributions of men, husbands and fathers. The world would be lacking without them.

We also welcome wives who want to support their husbands in becoming the best fathers they can be.

Listen to what Supreme Knight Carl Anderson has to say about Fathers for Good in this short video.

The Knights of Columbus wish all the fathers a Happy Father’s Day. May you have many years of happiness surrounded by your families.

We pray for those fathers who have gone home to their Heavenly Father. We encourage all fathers to take advantage of the resources provided through the Knights of Columbus to live up to your potential and become better fathers. God Bless.

Happy Father’s Day … Here’s a message you don’t hear too often: “As a father, you matter a lot. You are needed at home and in the wider world to do things only a dad can do. You can make all the difference in the lives of your children no matter their age. Just show up […]

Under God a Knights Legacy

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Did you know that the Knights of Columbus was instrumental in having the words “under God” added to our nations Pledge of Allegiance? Here is how the words “under God” came to be added to the pledge.This week we celebrate Flag Day. The original Pledge of Allegiance of the United States was written in August 1892, by the Baptist minister Francis Bellamy. Published the next month and recited in schools on Columbus Day, this Pledge initially did not contain a reference to God. In 1942, Congress officially recognized the U.S. Pledge, which had undergone some wording changes over the years, but still omitted a reference to God.

Knights of Columbus Under God

Pledge of Allegiance

 

How The Words “UNDER GOD” Came to be Added to the Pledge of Allegiance

 

 

In 1951, the Knights of Columbus, the world’s largest Catholic fraternal service organization, began including the words “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance. In New York City, on April 30, 1951, the board of directors of the Knights of Columbus adopted a resolution to amend the text of their Pledge of Allegiance at the opening of each of the meetings of the 800 Fourth Degree Assemblies of the Knights of Columbus by addition of the words “under God” after the words “one nation.”

Over the next two years, the idea spread throughout Knights of Columbus organizations nationwide. On August 21, 1952, the Supreme Council of the Knights of Columbus at its annual meeting adopted a resolution urging that the change be made universal, and copies of this resolution were sent to the President, the Vice President (as Presiding Officer of the Senate), and the Speaker of the House of Representatives. The National Fraternal Congress meeting in Boston on September 24, 1952, adopted a similar resolution upon the recommendation of its president, Supreme Knight Luke E. Hart. Several State Fraternal Congresses acted likewise almost immediately thereafter. This campaign led to several official attempts to prompt Congress to adopt the Knights of Columbus policy for the entire nation. These attempts were eventually a success. On Flag Day, June 14, 1954, President Eisenhower signed the congressional resolution that amended the Pledge to include the words “under God”.

In a letter dated Aug. 6 of the same year, President Eisenhower formally thanked the Order: “And this year we are particularly thankful to you for your part in the movement to have the words ‘under God’ added to our Pledge of Allegiance. These words will remind Americans that despite our great physical strength we must remain humble. They will help us to keep constantly in our minds and hearts the spiritual and moral principles which alone give dignity to man, and upon which our way of life is founded.”

There have been many attempts since then to attack including “under God” in the pledge.  We must remain vigilant: In a statement, Supreme Knight Carl A. Anderson underscored the Order’s dedication to God and country, in the past and in the future: “If necessary, once again the Knights will do all we can to see that the Pledge of Allegiance remains as is.”

Download Knights of Columbus Flyer (pledgeAllegiance.pdf)

Did you know that the Knights of Columbus was instrumental in having the words “under God” added to our nations Pledge of Allegiance? Here is how the words “under God” came to be added to the pledge.This week we celebrate Flag Day. The original Pledge of Allegiance of the United States was written in August […]